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Jodie Whittaker: why is the star leaving Doctor Who?

Jodie plays the 13th Doctor in the hit sci-fi show

jodie tardis
Emmy Griffiths
TV & Film Editor
October 31, 2021
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Jodie Whittaker is exiting Doctor Who after three seasons of playing the iconic Doctor herself – but why did she quit in the first place?

MORE: 7 actors who could take over from Jodie Whittaker in Doctor Who

The actress, who is also known for her roles in Broadchurch and Trust Me, revealed that she planned to star in three seasons before moving on since agreeing to take on the role, but did consider changing her mind when her time on the series was coming to an end.

WATCH: See the trailer for Doctor Who's highly-anticipated 13th season

She explained to Radio Times: "[Showrunner Chris Chibnall] and I always said we were going to do three series together, but then when you get to it, it’s a very different thing. Sometimes it was like… ‘Are we sticking to this decision?’ There’s part of me that could absolutely say, ‘No, let’s keep going! Let’s go back on it!’

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MORE: Everything you need to know about Jodie Whittaker's family

"But to give the fans the level that they deserve, there has to be some sacrifice. You have to know when you’ve done it. When it’s my last day of shooting, that will certainly feel as if a huge part of my life is over. But as far as being the Doctor, I get to drag it out for as long as they put the episodes on for."

jodie whittaker

We're going to miss her

Mandip Gill, who plays Yaz on the series, also revealed that Jodie's exit wasn't a surprise to her. She told Metro: "It’s always been common knowledge to me that that was the deal. They were gonna go, her and Chris, after three years and start together and end together.

"So it wasn’t anything new. I do know that whilst we were filming the last episode, [she] was a bit like, 'Am I doing the right thing?' You do, you’re loving it, you’re enjoying it, it’s a brilliant job, so I think you’ll always question that, you’ll always question something even if it is the right thing to do."

mandip gill

Mandip opened up about Jodie's exit

The new series is titled Doctor Who: Flux, and the official synopsis reads: "From Liverpool to the depths of space, via the Crimean war and a planet named Atropos, which shouldn’t even exist, fighting old foes and new creatures from beyond our dimension, the Doctor and company face a race against (and through!) time to uncover a universe-spanning mystery: what is the Flux?"

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